IPL 2021: Ambati Rayudu's direct hit sends Shubman Gill back to the dugout in the first over

Confusion between the KKR openers was followed up by a brilliant fielding effort by Ambati Rayudu.

Ambati Rayudu
Ambati Rayudu. (Photo Source: Disney + Hotstar)
Akash Ghosh

Sr. Staff Writer

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Ambati Rayudu’s fielding skills are absolute two-faced. There are times when it seems that he is a bit late on his legs but then you will see him take an incredible catch. In the case of the match 38 in the Indian Premier League 2021, it was a run-out. It was his direct hit that helped Chennai Super Kings to get off to a good start in the match against Kolkata Knight Riders. 

Continuing their good form from the first two matches of the UAE leg, KKR’s openers started off in a positive manner. In the first five balls of the innings, Kolkata raced to 10 with Shubman Gill hitting two boundaries off Deepak Chahar’s opening over. In the last ball of that over, Gill stepped out to hit the ball but a higher contact on the bat meant he managed to nudge it to mid-wicket where Ambati Rayudu was standing. 

Shubman Gill looked unhappy with his opening partner Venkatesh Iyer

Gill initially might have thought that the ball was a little far as he seemed to stroll towards the other end. But, Gill’s opening partner Venkatesh Iyer knew he wouldn’t have been able to make it to the danger end. He turned down Gill the single, and the right-handed batter didn’t have enough time as he was stuck in the middle of the pitch. 

By that time, Rayudu had collected the ball and had a shy at the stumps. He knew that MS Dhoni might not get to the stumps in time and he threw the ball. The ball hit the stumps as all his teammates gathered around him to celebrate his top fielding effort. Gill seemed disappointed looking at his partner at the other end, but his dismissal was definitely unfortunate. 

Earlier in the day, KKR captain Eoin Morgan won the toss and elected to bat. Gill’s dismissal didn’t put Kolkata off gear. Rahul Tripathi, who walked in at no. 3, continued his good form. With Eoin Morgan dismissed, the onus will be on him and later on Andre Russell to take the team to a good score.